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Teenager creates documentary celebrating life in coastal town

PUBLISHED: 12:04 16 September 2020 | UPDATED: 12:04 16 September 2020

Joshua Freemantle filming for the Life of Lowestoft documentary. PHOTO: Joshua Freemantle

Joshua Freemantle filming for the Life of Lowestoft documentary. PHOTO: Joshua Freemantle

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A 17-year-old teenager has created a documentary celebrating the life, past, present and future of the town of Lowestoft.

Joshua Freemantle who has directed the documentary Life of Lowestoft. PHOTO: Joshua FreemantleJoshua Freemantle who has directed the documentary Life of Lowestoft. PHOTO: Joshua Freemantle

Joshua Freemantle was inspired to share his town’s rich history, as well as the potential Lowestoft has as it comes out of the coronavirus pandemic.

The documentary had its world premiere on Tuesday at the East Coast Cinema in Kirkley, which was attended by around 60 VIP guests.

Filming for the documentary started in June 2019 and finished in August 2020, with elements of the pandemic featuring at the end of the film.

The film takes a chronological look through Lowestoft’s rich history, including how the town dealt with two World Wars and how it has always remained a popular tourist destination, particurlarly during the Victorian and Edwardian era.

Joshua Freemantle, standing with Phil Aves, of Lowestoft Rising. PHOTO: Joshua FreemantleJoshua Freemantle, standing with Phil Aves, of Lowestoft Rising. PHOTO: Joshua Freemantle

Joshua also looks at the town in its present moment, such as the scientific developments happening at Cefas and the potential future investment a third crossing can have for people and businesses in the area.

Talking about the inspiration behind the documentary, Joshua said: “The film as a whole has a really positive tone to it, so I wanted to make sure that this was highlighted properly.

“It’s about Lowestoft and I wanted to celebrate the past, present and future of the town and have that documented in the final film.

“The filming for the project started last year at the First Light Festival and we documented Heritage Open Days, the yearly event in September.

Joshua Freemantle on location filming at Ness Point. PHOTO: Joshua FreemantleJoshua Freemantle on location filming at Ness Point. PHOTO: Joshua Freemantle

“On top of this we interviewed local people in the town for projects that are going on and events.”

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The film that Joshua has produced was originally meant to air for its premiere at the Marina Theatre in June.

But due to the coronavirus pandemic, the theatre had to cancel the screening due to social distancing measures at the time.

View of the main bridge linking North and South Lowestoft. PHOTO: Joshua FreemantleView of the main bridge linking North and South Lowestoft. PHOTO: Joshua Freemantle

This did not stop Joshua from including parts of the impact of coronavirus on the town of Lowestoft in his documentary.

As part of the film, East Suffolk Council recorded their own video letting Joshua know how they were adapting to the new social distancing measures in the office.

Talking about the impact on the pandemic on the film, Joshua said: “I did a little call for some videos from people in the community during the lockdown for clap for carers and stuff like that is added in at the end of the film.

“We also did a little bit of re-filming in August where we interviewed Peter Aldous to talk about some of the investment happening in the town for the future of Lowestoft and also the third crossing.”

A prominent part of the documentary is looking to Lowestoft’s future, where Joshua made it clear that he hopes the documentary will ultimately act as a promotional video for the town.

He said: “I’ve had many conversations with Peter Aldous, he is passionate about what I am doing, he’s backing the project and he loves the idea of it.

“Once this film is released I feel he will push for more funding for the town and I hope that this film can act as an extended promotional video to encourage more investment in the town which will help with future regeneration plans for Lowestoft.”

Mr Aldous, Waveney MP, has said in the past that the development of a third crossing linking north and south Lowestoft will encourage businesses in the energy and oil sector to invest in the town.

The work to approve the crossing for the town has been going on since 2015 after it was revealed in Joshua’s documentary that the single biggest complaint in Lowestoft is traffic.

The £94m plan to build the Third Crossing was approved by the Department for Transport in April 2020, with the aim from East Suffolk Council leader Steve Gallant to “unleash the town’s economic potential” of Lowestoft.


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